It’s easy to see a plane in flight, admiring its power and grace, and forget about all the work needed to get it there.
There are the designers and engineers who envision a new aircraft and lay out a blueprint for it. There’s the army of men and women who actually construct an airplane, from the tires on the landing gear to the painted livery.
And even after an aircraft is built, it needs constant attention and maintenance to keep it safe and airworthy, particularly commercial planes.
Much of this is done by ground crews at airports around the world. They guide planes in and out of gates, refuel them for their next trips, check them for damage or wear, and provide passenger-related services like connecting the jetway and moving luggage.
These crews work in every type of weather: subzero temperatures to smothering humidity, pouring rain to blazing sun. They must move quickly but surely, protecting each other and their equipment in a constantly shifting environment.
Mohamed Mishmish’s photo of a United 737-800 at Gate A2 here at Pittsburgh International gave us this chance to acknowledge the invaluable contributions of our men and women on the ramp. Thank you, all of you, for your hard work.
Of course, once a plane is off the ground, it’s in a pilot’s hands, and we don’t want to forget them.
Darren Molten is a Pittsburgh-based pilot for Republic Airways, and he wanted to share this photo of his lovely family with us. Looks like he’s got his own support crew, doesn’t it?
Thanks, Mohamed and Darren!
Our readers continue to pass along shots of unique aircraft, international airports, historical events, gorgeous views and even family vacation photos for this feature. We love them! Keep them coming — you can click here for submission guidelines.
Republic Airways pilot Darren Molten and his family inside the cockpit of an Embraer E175. (Photo submitted by Darren Molten)